The Importance of Spring Duct Cleaning

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If you’re like everyone else in New England, you can’t wait for spring to arrive. While we all look forward to the warm, sunny days, most of us dread time-consuming seasonal tasks like spring cleaning. At Aeroseal Solutions, we look forward to spring because it’s one of the best times to perform duct cleanings that help home and business owners enjoy the many benefits of enhanced indoor air quality. If you’re planning a thorough home or business cleaning, consider having your ducts cleaned as well.

Duct Cleaning Recommendations

Spring is the perfect season for duct cleaning because there’s a small window between the height of the heating season and the beginning of the cooling season.

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Industry associations and government agencies like the EPA recommend duct cleanings in specific circumstances. You don’t need to have a problem with mold, pests or construction debris to benefit. Cleanings are recommended if you can see dust coming from your vents. A thorough cleaning will also address stale or unpleasant odors that are noticeable when the system in running.

Benefits of Duct Cleaning and Sealing
If you or anyone in your family has experienced itchy, watery eyes, coughing, choking or respiratory discomfort this winter, dirty ducts could be the culprits. Families with asthma or allergy sufferers can benefit the most from a thorough duct cleaning. Pet owners will also notice a dramatic improvement in indoor air quality.

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Before we begin the cleaning, our experts will assess your entire HVAC system. We pay extra attention to the supply and return ducts. The return is especially vulnerable because debris is pulled into the system where it coats fans and air handling components. On the other side, debris from the ducts is ejected into your living space, which can trigger allergy symptoms and fuel your discomfort.

before-after

Duct sealing is another thing to consider. This process can increase efficiency significantly while sealing cracks and gaps that allow pollutants to enter and contaminate your ductwork. Experts estimate that 20 percent of conditioned air escapes through cracks and loose fittings. If that much air can get out, you can imagine how much dirt and dust can enter.

Ways to Improve Indoor Air Quality
In addition to having your ducts cleaned and sealed, you can improve your air quality by adopting these smart habits.

  • Dust and vacuum regularly
  • Replace return filters monthly
  • Minimize the use of chemical cleansers
  • Have your HVAC system serviced annually
  • Hire a professional to inspect your ducts
  • Increase ventilation

Source: Aeroseal

Aspen Air Duct Cleaning is an approved Aeroseal Dealer, licensed and ensured, and a member of the National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA) and National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors (NORMI).

Please contact Aspen Air Duct Cleaning at 1-800-931-6653 for an Air Duct System Inspection and to learn more about how sealing air duct leaks can improve indoor air quality and reduce energy costs. Or email info@aspenenvironmentalservices.com.

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The Blizzard And Blocked Gas-Furnace Vents

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In light of the severe snowstorm recently experienced in the Northeast, Aspen Air Duct Cleaning Services would like to provide this helpful article from our fellow professionals in Connecticut as a service to our customers, colleagues, and the general public.

Gas furnaces, carbon monoxide and rotten eggs: Homes heated by natural gas vent a byproduct, carbon monoxide, to the outside of the house. A sidewall vent blocked by drifting snow, trapping carbon monoxide in the home, could be deadly.

Connecticut Natural Gas and Southern Connecticut Gas responded to about 250 reports of gas leaks caused by clogged sidewall vents or buried meter and regulator sets during a weekend blizzard, says spokesman Michael West.
Carbon monoxide, like natural gas, is odorless. Gas companies add mercaptan to their product, creating the signature rotten-egg smell. Carbon monoxide produced by burning that fuel will not smell like rotten eggs, but it’s not odorless, either.

“The clogged sidewall vents cause incomplete combustion,” says West, “and do create odors in the basement. Your equipment might start malfunctioning and people think they might smell something and that something’s odd. We get calls of concern and it’s really not a gas leak. It’s just your vents trying to vent. That backup will create a smell.”

Don’t let it get that far. Clear the vent and the meter area, says West, with something other than a shovel or snow blower, which can cause damage. Use a broom, he says. And don’t wait.
“Some people are still waiting for their street to be plowed,” he says. “What we’re saying is if you have gas heating in your home you just need to do this. There’s no need to wait. There’s no need to think about timing. There’s no need to try to figure that out. You just want to clear a path so you can vent properly.”

The weekend blizzard, and drifting, was fiercest at night. That’s when a working carbon monoxide detector, which every home heated by natural gas should have, becomes a potential lifesaving monitor.

If you smell an unusual odor, report it to your gas company.

Source: Kevin Hunt for the Hartford Courant

Aspen Air Duct Cleaning is an approved Aeroseal Dealer, licensed and ensured, and a member of the National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA) and National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors (NORMI).

Please contact Aspen Air Duct Cleaning at 1-800-931-6653 for an Air Duct System Inspection and to learn more about how sealing air duct leaks can improve indoor air quality and reduce energy costs. Or email info@aspenenvironmentalservices.com.

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Many Boston public schools are said to have bad air. Report calls poor ventilation, leaking roofs red flags.

According to The Boston Globe, a city report says that more than half of Boston’s schools are plagued by poor or deficient air quality, which studies have linked to low student achievement and high rates of asthma.

The findings, released Wednesday, are based on an examination of schools’ ventilation systems or the lack of them, and other factors that can affect air quality, including the inability to open windows.

Boston Mayor Martin Walsh is quoted as saying, “The city’s schools have a ‘history of neglect.’”

This is not an uncommon problem in city-owned buildings, which are often neglected due to lack of taxpayer funds. But this neglect could result in costs that are far more than just repair—like student/teacher illnesses and absenteeism.

Source: Jessica Rinaldi for The Boston Globe

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A new technology called Aeroseal can solve problems like this and save school districts both time and money. Aeroseal s a product that seals small leaks in the ductwork. No attic work is required by the crew to work the equipment. It is monitored by a computer program that tells when the pressure of the ductwork is low enough that most of the leakage has been sealed.

Read the case study below to see how Aeroseal rescued the renovation of a school in this one example of many Aeroseal success stories.

WHEN NEW DUCTWORK WASN’T IN THE BUDGET OR TIME SCHEDULE AEROSEAL RESCUES ARIZONA MIDDLE SCHOOL RENOVATION

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During the floor-to-ceiling renovation of the Gallego Intermediate School, contractors removed the existing ceiling tiles to find ductwork that was in such bad shape, replacing the entire duct system seemed to be the only option. The building’s HVAC included 34 individual units, each with its own supply and return ducts, all made of duct board that was literally falling apart at the seams. Some of the ducts were in such disrepair that they made leakage testing impossible.

Unfortunately, the Tucson, Arizona-area school district couldn’t afford either the additional expense or time necessary to replace the existing duct system. Beyond the estimated $200,000 dollars it would have cost for the work, the school was set to open in three months and replacing the ductwork would have taken twice that time.

Faced with this project-halting dilemma, a consulting engineer on the project suggested they look at Aeroseal, a new duct sealing technology he had seen demoed at a recent industry seminar. The Aeroseal experts at GreenSeal were called in to share information about the new technology and in just a matter of days, they began the work.

Given the poor condition of much of the existing ductwork, the GreenSeal crew began reconnecting and repairing the most dilapidated portions using tape and mastic. Even after this work, testing showed a total system leakage rate of about 49,000 CFM. Then the Aerosealing began.

Aeroseal at work

It took GreenSeal less than two weeks to Aeroseal all 34 duct systems – both supply and return. The final results showed total leakage down to 8,000 CFM – an 85% reduction and well below the 5% leakage rate they were targeting. The total cost for Aerosealing was a fraction of the estimate for duct replacement and best of all, the school opened on time.

I think a lot of schools in the district could benefit from this technology. The Aeroseal team was able to work in coordination with all the other contractors on the job, ensuring that we maintained our extremely tight schedule. They also assisted us in securing a rebate from the local utility company that helped us stay within budget. In the end, this was an ideal solution to a potentially derailing problem. I look forward to assessing energy savings over the next year or two. In the meantime, we have heard nothing but positive feedback regarding the comfort of those using the new school building.”

Tom Hubbard, Bond Project Manager, Sunnyside School District

When contractors removed the ceiling tiles, they saw that the existing ductwork was in really bad shape. They wanted to replace all of the ductwork but it was simply out of the budget – and that’s when one of our engineering consultants suggested we look into using Aeroseal as an alternative. It proved to be much less expensive than replacing the ductwork and it took only a matter of days to complete the job so the school was able to open as scheduled.”

Cindy Bova, Energy Project Manager, Sunnyside School District

Aeroseal—The Technology:

Developed at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in 1994.

Research for Aeroseal technology was partially funded by the U.S. Department of Energy.

Aeroseal is the only duct sealant technology that is applied from the inside of the duct system. It is delivered as a non-toxic aerosol mist that seeks out and plugs leaks.

Aeroseal has proven to be 95% effective at sealing air duct leaks.

Source: Aeroseal

Aspen Air Duct Cleaning is an approved Aeroseal Dealer, licensed and ensured, and a member of the National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA) and National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors (NORMI).

Please contact Aspen Air Duct Cleaning at 1-800-931-6653 for an Air Duct System Inspection and to learn more about how sealing air duct leaks can improve indoor air quality and reduce energy costs. Or email info@aspenenvironmentalservices.com.

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